Palace clarifies: Napoles to stay in jail, convicted in earlier case
Malacañang on Wednesday pointed out that while Fourth Division of the Sandiganbayan granted the bail of Janet Lim-Napoles, the alleged pork barrel scam mastermind cannot be released from detention because of an earlier conviction.
“We note the resolution of the Sandiganbayan in granting bail to Ms. Napoles, being a separate branch of government under the Judiciary. However, it should be emphasized that Ms. Napoles was convicted in April 2015 by the Makati RTC for serious illegal detention,” Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in a text message to media.
“Accordingly, she cannot be released due to such conviction and the several other cases for plunder pending against her,” he added.
Napoles’ bail was also earlier denied by the other Sandiganbayan divisions hearing her plunder case.
Also granted bail by the Fourth Division was dismissed Masbate governor Rizalina Seachon-Lanete.
The court said the prosecution was not able to prove that Lanete received P50 million in kickbacks from Napoles. Plunder requires a threshold amount of P50 million.
The prosecution also admitted that the two have never met personally.
Napoles has been accused of creating bogus non-government organizations and working with lawmakers to access the now defunct Priority Development Assistance Fund for kickbacks. CDG
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